A BEACH with “unmanageable” visitor numbers has reminded sightseers to pre-book their parking.

Following ‘Freedom Day’ on July 19, West Wittering Estate has urged anyone considering a trip to the Chichester beach to pre-book parking using JustPark amid high levels of visitors.

A spokesman for the West Wittering Estate said by capping visitor numbers, they can increase visitor safety.

“Due to increasing visitor numbers that were becoming unmanageable, the pre-booked system is the only way the West Wittering Estate can operate a safe, environmentally conscious facility,” he said.

Since the introduction of the pre-book parking system, the beach has seen a “substantial reduction in safety incidents, queuing times and delays around the peninsula”, according to the spokesman.

“Daily numbers have been reduced, but monthly visitor numbers have remained stable as demand is being spread, with total visitor numbers similar to pre-pandemic levels,” he said.

“We work closely with local authorities and other beach operators around the south coast – most recently joining forces with Bournemouth Council and registering with its free National Beach Check, which provides a traffic light system for availability indicating busy areas (red), less busy areas (amber) and those with plenty of space available (green).

“We will continue to adopt new innovations and ways of working to ensure a safe and enjoyable day out at the beach for visitors that works in harmony with the local community, business and residents.”

The JustPark system allows visitors to pre-book a parking space between the times that suit them.

The app will help locate spaces available in the area you are after and provide pricing for that space.

Customers can pay via card, Apple or Android pay.

The spokesman said over the past five years, West Wittering Estate has invested heavily in staff, training and equipment and as a result, safety incident numbers at the beach have fallen.

The data on incidents recorded by the Lifeguard Team over the 2020 Blue Flag season (May to September) showed that, compared to 2018, the number of visitors needing first aid was down 33%, while the number of visitors needing assistance (such as a Lifeguard taking action in the water) was down 50%.

The number of missing people was also down 50%.

West Wittering Estate’s land is part of the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.